News Briefs

    BITRE Nov-2016 statistics show further growth 

    Australia’s Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE) has reported (06-Feb-2017) the following international traffic highlights to/from Australia in Nov-2016:

    • Passenger numbers: 3.0 million, +7.1% year-on-year;
    • Available seats: 4.0 million, +11.2%;
    • Flights: 15,445, +8.7%;
    • Cargo volume: 94,389 tonnes, +7.0%;
    • Aircraft movements: 15,748, +9.1%;


    Top 10 international carriers:

    Share of passengers carried:

        • Qantas: 15.1%, -1.2 ppts;
        • Jetstar: 9.0%,  +0.7 ppt;
        • Emirates: 8.3%, -1.0 ppt;
        • Singapore Airlines: 8.0%, -0.5 ppt;
        • Air New Zealand: 7.1%, -0.4 ppt;
        • Virgin Australia: 6.4%, -0.5 ppt;
        • Cathay Pacific Airways: 5.0%, -0.6 ppt;
        • AirAsia X: 4.2%, +1.1 ppts;
        • Etihad Airways: 3.0%, -0.3 ppt;
        • China Southern Airlines: 2.9%, -0.1 ppt;

    Share of cargo carried:

        • Singapore Airlines: 16.6%, -1.0 ppt;
        • Qantas: 12.3%, -0.4 ppt;
        • Emirates: 10.5%, -2.0 ppts;
        • Cathay Pacific Airways: 7.5%, -0.2 ppt;
        • Air New Zealand: 5.5%, +0.4 ppt;
        • Malaysia Airlines: 3.6%, -0.9 ppt;
        • Thai Airways: 3.6%, -0.1 ppt;
        • China Southern Airlines: 3.4%, stable;
        • Etihad Airways: 3.1%, +0.2 ppt;
        • Qatar Airways: 2.9%, +0.9 ppt.


    Cebu Pacific AirIndonesia AirAsiaJetstarJetstar AsiaScoot and Tigerair Australia accounted for 17.7% of total international passenger traffic to/from Australia in Nov-2016. LCC share in Nov-2016 was 16.4%.


    New Zealand Government welcomes Qatar Airways’ inaugural Doha – Auckland service

    New Zealand‘s Minister of Trade and State Owned Enterprises Todd McClay welcomed (06-Feb-2017) Qatar Airways‘ inaugural Doha-Auckland service, stating the route will, “Continue to gain importance when New Zealand concludes a Free Trade Agreement with the Gulf Cooperation Council”.

    Mr McClay stated two way trade between New Zealand and Qatar exceeds NZD330 million (USD241.6 million) stating:

    “The estimated economic impact of this new service will be well in excess of NZD50 million (USD36.6 million).”


    Fiji Airways receives loan to secure ongoing operations

    Fiji National Provident Fund (FNPF) COO Jaoji Koroi said the choice to provide Fiji Airways with a FJD181 million (USD88 million) loan was a “good investment” (Fiji Times, 06-Feb-2017). Mr Koroi said Fiji Airways’ loan repayments were mostly done in advance, with the account decreasing from FJD181 million (USD88 million) to FJD100 million (USD48 million).

    FNPF GM member services Alipate Waquirawai said the loan also benefitted the economy since the majority of tourists to Fiji travel on Fiji Airways, which in turn stimulates tourism jobs. Fiji Airways’ total loan portfolio stands at FJD115 million (USD56 million) and had a partial early redemption of FJD19 million (USD9.2 million).


    Air Raratonga teams up with

    Air Rarotonga announced (30-Jan-2017) a partnership with and technology partner EZY Webwerkstaden, to add hotel deal offers for customers booking Air Rarotonga flights online.


    Armidale Airport commences AUD16.5 million expansion project

    Armidale Airport commenced an AUD16.5 million (USD12.6 million) expansion project (Northern Daily Leader, 06-Feb-2017). The initial phase will expand the apron area and terminal to add a baggage carousel, additional seats, retail outlets and a cafe. This phase will cost AUD9 million (USD6.8 million) and is scheduled to be complete by May-2017. The following phase will refurbish the departure lounge, baggage collection area and car hire facilities. The entire project will complete in 2017.


    Illawarra Airport looks to resumption of scheduled services

    Australia’s Shellharbour Council reportedly appointed consultants to assess the feasibility of resuming scheduled air services at Illawarra Regional Airport (Illawarra Mercury, 06-Feb-2017). Shellharbour is reportedly the largest metropolitan area in Australia without a scheduled passenger air service. The last scheduled service at the airport was Qantas‘ Illawarra-Melbourne route, which ended in Jul-2008.


    Airnorth has schedules a seasonal weekly Darwin- Kununurra-Perth service

    Airnorth has scheduled (03-Feb-2017) a seasonal weekly Darwin-Kununurra-Perth service from 23-Jun-2017 to 30-Sep-2017. The service will operate with Embraer 170 equipment, according to OAG, and Airnorth will be the route’s sole operator. Airnorth CEO Daniel Bowden stated:

    “I am delighted that Airnorth is again in a position to reintroduce seasonal flight services to Perth after a successful programme in last year’s dry season”.


    CASA announces final fitment mandate for ADS-B technology

    CASA announced (02-Feb-2017) the final fitment mandate for ADS-B technology came into effect for all instrument flight rules (IFR) aircraft in Australia. CASA acting director of aviation safety Shane Carmody said, “Before ADS-B, Australia’s electronic airspace surveillance coverage was patchy by international standards, with only around 18% of the continent covered by radar”. ADS-B, “Heralds a new era in technology” according to Mr Carmody.


    PNG Air recertified at Gold level BARS

    PNG Air announced (25-Jan-2017) a recent renewal audit with Basic Aviation Risk Standard (BARS) recertified the carrier at “Gold” level for the next two years.

    BARS was developed by mining resource companies and the Flight Safety Foundation to establish a common safety audit standard for suppliers of aviation services to the resource industry. PNG Air CEO Muralee Siva stated:

    “As PNG Air has significant operations in the resources sector for both charter and scheduled passenger services we are delighted that our work on safety programs and internal processes has been recognised”.


    Traffic Management Policy Institute formed

    CANSO partnered (06-Feb-2017) with Airways New ZealandANS CRIrish Aviation Authority and NATS to form the “ATM Policy Institute”, to provide R&D on ATM policy issues and, “Make the case for the benefits of enabling ANSPs to compete with each other for the provision of ATM services”.

    The Institute is chaired by former Eurocontrol DG David McMillan. Mr McMillan stated:

    “ATM remains largely a national monopoly, without the incentives necessary to drive up performance…We believe that by opening up parts of the ATM industry to greater liberalisation significant benefits could be achieved, including reducing costs and minimising the environmental impact of aviation”.

    The ANSPs stated cases where competition has been introduced in the ATM industry have seen significant benefits. The ANSPs stated Spain, which changed its provider for terminal air navigation services via competitive tender, has reduced costs by around 50%.


    Airservices Australia appoints new aircraft noise ombudsmen

    Airservices Australia appointed (06-Feb-2017) Narelle Bell as aircraft noise ombudsman, succeeding Ron Brent from 08-Feb-2017. Ms Bell was previously a senior member of Australia‘s Commonwealth Administrative Appeals Tribunal. The aircraft noise ombudsman was established in 2010 as an independent administrative office to oversee the handling of aircraft noise enquiries and complaints. Following an agreement with the Australian Department of Defence in 2015, the ombudsman now also serves as an independent noise complaint and review mechanism for Australian Defence Force flight operations.